Monthly Archives: August 2011

Puzzles of Islam…


Odyssey_Islam_Qur'an_Study
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Date: August 22, 2011

Probably a good place to start, is in going over what I have learned, thus far…

The koran is claimed to be, “the absolute word of allah”…

I don’t know a tremendous amount…but, I do know that the koran is essentially divided into two sections…The very early writings of mohammed, from his life before gaining any power…and then from his later life, as a powerful warlord in Mecca.

The koran is known to contradict itself…and the claimed resolution, is to regard all latter writings as replacement, for earlier writings that are in conflict.

…So, one must know the koran fairly well, in order to discern where and how, two [or more] passages of the koran, are in conflict…and which passage takes precedence…

To further complicate issues…the koran is presented in a format, where the longest chapter is presented first…and it progresses from longest chapter, all the way to shortest chapter…They are not presented in chronological order…So, it’s not necessarily easy, to discern what nullifies what…

This strange presentation, is likely due to some sort of cultural, publishing custom…

If this does not confuse one enough…yet another layer is added, in the form of “the hadith”…which is still another book, also known as “the customs of mohammed”.

The hadith, is a collection of writings [possibly from historians, people who knew mohammed…maybe, diary entries from mohammed himself, I don’t know]…They record the actions, commands, etc, of mohammed, as relates to his own “following of the koran”…

Mohammed is considered to be “the perfect muslim”…so, the hadith is thought to be even more important than the koran, in the sense that it claims to show how mohammed lived, as “the perfect muslim”…someone every muslim is supposed to aspire to be like.

With the hadith…theoretically…every muslim could know, how to react and behave, in many [most?] situations…just by reading, and emulating what mohammed did.

Eventually, I expect I will get around to the hadith…but, as you can see…there is a considerable maze, here…The teachings of islam, are not straight forward, by any stretch of the imagination…There are complex layers, to it.

In this light…it is easy to see, why it takes an islamic scholar, in order to decipher what
“the intention of allah” is presumed to be, according to the koran [or mohammed]…

Regardless, we shall persevere…with our reading of the koran…and other, various surveys of islam, and many forms of muslim behavior…

But, it may eventually prove worthwhile, to understand the things explained above…

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